CWC hit by Caribbean lull

Steve Dinneen
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CABLE & Wireless Communications (CWC) is cautious on the outlook for its key Caribbean market despite seeing signs of stabilisation.

CWC, which focuses on the Caribbean, Macau and Panama, split from the former Cable & Wireless group, now Cable & Wireless Worldwide (CWW), earlier this year.

It said yesterday the Caribbean had faced its most difficult economic conditions in a generation and said it was still cautious on its outlook but the second half performance had come in line with the first.

Overall C&W Comms reported full-year revenue of £1.62bn, just short of the consensus market forecast of £1.65bn. Ebitda and exceptionals was $908 (£628m) but after taking out costs for the Central business ebitda was $866m.

Chief financial officer Tim Pennington told City A.M.: “This is a time to be cautious. Our results are reasonable in the context of other telco firms.

“Revenues have dropped a touch but we expect them to hold in the next year. Ebitda is up despite real pressure, which makes for a decent performance.”

CWW reported losses of £94m yesterday, prompted by £210m of exceptional items, including £143m stemming from the recognition of the deficit in its defined benefit pension scheme and £13m of demerger-related costs.